I received this novel as an advance copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Andy Weir’s novel, The Martian, did so well that it was adapted to a movie. However, I neither read the book nor watched the movie. Why? Well, its not really my type of book. It’s kind of similar to my aversion to books on animals; it’s just not my scene. But this latest book had been getting a lot of notice, and its premise seemed different enough from The Martian that I felt it might be something I would like. Here is my review:
Jazz Bashara is a criminal. But she has her reasons. Life on Artemis, the first and only city on the moon, is no cakewalk unless you’re working with tourists or an eccentric billionaire. By smuggling in harmless bits of contraband, Jazz is just trying to make ends meet. However, everything changes when Jazz is given the opportunity to make enough money to last her a life time. But pulling off this impossible crime is just the beginning of her problems, as she finds herself caught in the middle of a conspiracy to control Artemis itself.
The entire time I read this novel, it just had this very childish vibe to it. The crime and the consequences of it were serious, however it was delivered in such a childish, peppy manner that I couldn’t take it seriously. It was this weird mashup of a 1930s detective story with its mysterious characters and twists and turns, and some funny teen novel. And I didn’t really like it. I couldn’t get a handle on the mood or tone of this novel at all, and it just made everything seem like a big joke. Jazz’s character was also an issue for me. I have no problem with female characters who don’t act in a feminine way. However, it really felt as if the author was struggling to create Jazz. Every now and then, the author makes some really cringy assertion to make it clear that Jazz is a female. I also didn’t like the fact that Jazz talks to the reader sometimes in an attempt to add humor to the situation; it was just very awkward. None of the jokes were funny and the joviality of it all was just cringe-worthy. I didn’t actually mind the fact that the author included scientific information; I learned a lot of things that I didn’t know, and it wasn’t delivered in a heavy pedantic way. But the whole plot was just not intense enough for me to feel pulled into it and I really couldn’t care about anything in this novel. So far, I’m not really getting a great impression of this author’s work … but maybe, just maybe, when I have nothing left to read…. I’ll give The Martian a try. For now, this novel gets a 2/5 from me.